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Discussion Starter #1
First spring commissioning. What do you guys do to check the mast lights? Just bring and hook up the battery? I guess thats the only option? but wanted to ask. I'd rather ask alot of questions and sound dumb but know what I am doing than not ask and just hope I may know what I am doing.
 

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Superior Sailor
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I winter with the mast down (indoor storage)

Before commissioning I hook a battery to the light(s) anchor, steaming and deck to check for operation as well as pull bulb and check sockets for corrosion

With mast up all you can do is hook up the battery and turn the switch...
 

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Barquito
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With the mast down you could use a multi-meter, and check the resistance through the wire. The wire and bulb should provide some resistance but is shouldn't be an open circuit. If any of the bulbs are LEDs, diodes only allow current in one direction.
 

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Use a voltmeter to check that 12V appears on the wires when you turn each switch on (also helps you to identify which wires are which); if you have a battery monitor or ammeter you should see the current go up if the bulb is on ( though it may be tough to register if you're using LEDs)

Finally if necessary a trip up the mast might be in order....
 

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Discussion Starter #5
the mast is stored on a rack at the moment. Just lugging the battery over there seems like a pain.
 

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I picked up a cheap 12v lawn tractor battery to use for testing purposes. Enough amperage to make things noticeable, while still lasting more than a few minutes. And I can always recharge it for using later. It's not a 9v to carry, but it beats lugging a full size battery all over to test things.
 

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Living the dream
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I picked up a cheap 12v lawn tractor battery to use for testing purposes. Enough amperage to make things noticeable, while still lasting more than a few minutes. And I can always recharge it for using later. It's not a 9v to carry, but it beats lugging a full size battery all over to test things.
That's what I do. I use an alarm system backup battery of about 3 to 7 a/h. I made a test lead with a 3A circuit breaker inline just to ensure I don't burn nothing out if I hook it up wrong (learnt that one the hard way at the expense of an Icom VHF radio :()

The problem with using a meter alone is it won't necessarily reveal a bad connection and I'm not even sure how it would read against LED lights which may show as an open circuit under a multimeter resistance test.
 
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